- Posted by Drew Epperley
- On May 2, 2014
- 0 Comments
- 2014 MLS Season, 2014 Week 9
The busy month of May is upon us here as the MLS season rolls into a new month. Several teams will begin busy weeks with two to three games on the menu as the league schedule tightens up for the World Cup run next month.
1. Double and triple dips ahead. Like I mentioned, several teams will be in action this weekend and twice in Week 10. How coaches handle the schedule congestion this early in the year is always tricky. Look at someone like Oscar Pareja in Dallas, whose team is top of the league but will likely be without Kellyn Acosta (out 6-to-12 weeks) and Mauro Diaz (could be out one or two weeks, or even the entire season depending on some reports). Teams have to get creative this early in the year with their rosters not to burn out any young players but to also not over work the more veteran players. In other words, May might be the month that predicts who is truly for real in 2014 and who is pretending.
2. Can Portland get off the winless route? It has been a tough couple of months to start the season for Caleb Porter and his Timbers. Winless in eight games but the light may be at the end of the tunnel starting this weekend. Their next three games are Providence Park, which should be enough to get them out of the winless column and back into a more stable state. You look at that stretch coming up and think, if they don’t get at least six points out of that three game spell at home, this team could very well be toast this early in the season.
3. NYCFC already hunting DPs. This isn’t really an item for this weekend but I found this article interesting none the less. Their expansion mates in Florida already have five players signed to their MLS roster for 2015, including one Homegrown player. NYCFC has plenty of work to do but they are banking on the fact that they’ll be a team in New York City. We already know that they’re going to likely bring in a few Manchester City youngsters but as far as the DP slots, they’ll be scouting heavily in Brazil this summer.
New England Revolution at Toronto FC – Like I mentioned, this is a month where we will see what teams are truly made of here and that include someone like Toronto. They have some Canadian Cup games to deal with coming up so how Ryan Nelsen handles this game will be telling. New England has played better in their last couple of weeks but I need to be convinced with them on the road. I’m taking the Reds in a close one here.
WVH Prediction: Toronto 1, New England 0
San Jose Earthquakes at Vancouver Whitecaps – Big anniversary celebration going on in Vancouver this weekend for this game so emotions could be high for the crowd there. San Jose has been playing well in their last couple of games but their road record this season isn’t anything worth noting so far. I like what the Whitecaps have done at home so far this season and that should be enough to carry them in a physical game this weekend.
WVH Prediction: Vancouver 2, San Jose 1
Real Salt Lake at Chicago Fire – The Fire hope to finally get here as they’ve drawn their last SIX games. It won’t be easy with a RSL team that hasn’t dropped a game this season. The Fire need to find ways to get Mike Magee going here this season or else they could be staring at another bad result. I think in the end we’re looking at another draw for these two sides though.
WVH Prediction: Chicago 1, RSL 1
LA Galaxy at Colorado Rapids – This could be one of the better games of the weekend. Colorado does a lot of little things well while the Galaxy are a quality team that is on the verge of getting things going here this season. I do believe this one will come down to a midfield battle, which should favor the Galaxy. Last week in Seattle, the Rapids looked terrible in the middle portion of the field and LA is just as smart of a team as the Sounders are.
WVH Prediction: LA 2, Colorado 1
Philadelphia Union at Seattle Sounders – I wouldn’t be shocked if Philadelphia frustrates what Seattle likes to do up top with Clint Dempsey and Obafemi Martins, but the Union have shown so far this season that they’re completely inconsistent with how they play from game to game and even deeper into that from 15 minute stretch to the next. Seattle should run away with this one.
WVH Prediction: Seattle 2, Philadelphia 0
D.C. United at Portland Timbers – United are very much the better team at the moment but going on the West coast has never been their thing under Ben Olsen. Portland should find ways to get the result in this one but I don’t think it will be pretty. Still, a result is a result as far as the Timbers fans are concerned.
WVH Prediction: Portland 2, D.C. 1
Houston Dynamo at Chivas USA – A fairly intriguing match to look at here. Chivas has been dreadful as of late while the Dynamo haven’t exactly been good either. This one feels like it could easily go either way but I’m going to say a draw seems more appropriate based on what I’ve seen lately out of these two squads.
WVH Prediction: Chivas 1, Houston 1
New York Red Bulls at FC Dallas – Things are about to get real dicy for FCD if the reports on Mauro Diaz are true. They don’t have a quality backup in place for him. New York has looked good these last few weeks and very well could find a result on the road here for the first time time this season. I think a lot will come down to whether or not Thierry Henry and Bradley Wright-Phillips are allowed the space that they need to create chances or not. This one feels like a draw but part of me wouldn’t be shocked with a New York win.
WVH Prediction: Dallas 1, New York 1
Columbus Crew at Sporting KC – Game of the week as far as I am concerned. I’m more intrigued to see how the matchup between these two sides plays out as both like to press up the field. I think the quality that Sporting KC has across the entire field will play out a little more than what Columbus has at the moment. Dom Dwyer will get another goal in a tight win.
WVH Prediction: Sporting KC 1, Columbus 0